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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : Politics

Postgraduate Course: Dissertation MSc by Research Politics (80 credit) (PLIT11007)

Course Outline
School School of Social and Political Science College College of Humanities and Social Science
Course type Dissertation Availability Not available to visiting students
Credit level (Normal year taken) SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) Credits 80
Home subject area Politics Other subject area None
Course website None Taught in Gaelic? No
Course description The dissertation is an extended piece of independent scholarship in the field. It is the main work in which students demonstrate achievement of crucial learning outcomes for the MSc by Research, drawing on relevant material covered in the taught element of the degree and through supervision. The dissertation can be up to 19,000 words in length.

The nature of a dissertation for the MSc by Research may vary. For students proceeding to a PhD or MPhil, it will normally take the form of a full research proposal. In this case, it will contain an extended review of the literature, establishing the research questions, plus an extended discussion of the likely research design and any methodological issues. Alternatively, the dissertation may comprise a discrete piece of (usually empirical) research, possibly a pilot study for the eventual doctoral research. This will usually incorporate literature review, research questions, research design and methodology, data collection and analysis elements, and conclusions.

In this 80 credit dissertation, at least one of the elements required for 60 credits will normally be more developed: eg, additional specific canonical bibliographic data relevant to the research topic, more advanced engagement in relevant concepts or theory, more detailed treatment of ethical and methodological issues.

Entry Requirements
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs None
Course Delivery Information
Delivery period: 2010/11 Full Year, Not available to visiting students (SS1) WebCT enabled:  No Quota:  None
Location Activity Description Weeks Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
No Classes have been defined for this Course
First Class First class information not currently available
No Exam Information
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
Students should:

- demonstrate the ability to carry out a sustained piece of independent scholarship, involving project and time management
- demonstrate the ability to frame a coherent and answerable set of research questions, to justify these in relation to existing knowledge and theories, and to demonstrate that answering them would constitute an advance on existing knowledge
- achieve a command of existing knowledge in their field of research, through a critical and reasonably comprehensive review of relevant literature engaging in salient debates
- demonstrate the ability to produce a research design capable of answering the chosen research questions
- demonstrate an understanding of research methods, appropriate to the research topic and questions, taking due account of any practical, political and ethical issues affecting the conduct of their research
- where relevant, demonstrate the ability to implement the chosen research design and methods of data collection and analysis
- where relevant, come up with credible conclusions (eg, on the implications of a pilot study for a fuller study)
- where relevant, demonstrate the ability to integrate theoretical and empirical elements
- produce written scholarship in line with research and bibliographic conventions
Assessment Information
up to 19,000 words
Special Arrangements
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus Not entered
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list Not entered
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
Keywords Not entered
Course organiser Prof John Peterson
Tel: (0131 6)51 3023
Course secretary Miss Helen O'Shea
Tel: (0131 6)50 9703
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